Big changes may be coming to the Downtown Transit Center. The People Mover bus depot could add a hotel, restaurant and apartments to it's layout in less than two years, according to Melinda Gant with the Anchorage Community Development Authority.

Gant said the Authority, which owns the building, put out a request for proposals in the spring to upgrade the aging building. A committee narrowed the design choice to a single $45 million dollar project that includes 39 apartments.

"These are one bedroom apartments,' said Gant. "And they all have access to the back side of the 6th and H parking garage. So if any of the renters have vehicles, they now have a parking garage with indoor parking."

Under the plan, Gant said the building would still be a place to catch a city bus. But People Mover operations would move to a small corner of the building and the area where people wait would shrink considerably. Gant said if construction begins in the fall, as anticipated, People Mover would have to move their operations temporarily.

"Because they can't safely stay there during the time of construction," Gant said. "So like with any construction project that whole property is going to have to be fenced in. So  the sidewalk won't be safe to walk on. It won't be safe for People Mover customers to get on and off around the whole building."

Gant said details of the plan are still being negotiated but that no public money would be used in the construction. The developers plan to finance the project themselves. She said a contract is expected to be signed in March with the hope that the building will be completed by the fall of 2019.

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